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Conservatives not welcome…

By Michelle Malkin  •  July 17, 2004 02:59 PM

…at the Republican Party convention! The Washington Times and Bob Novak report separately on efforts by conservatives to diversify the Karl Rove-approved, namby-pamby, prime-time speakers line-up. The Times’ Ralph Hallow writes today:

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, New York Gov. George E. Pataki, New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and former Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani � all of whom are pro-choice � are lined up for evening speeches.

Among three other prime-time speakers, Sen. John McCain of Arizona is a fiscal conservative with a pro-life voting record. But he publicly ran against religious conservatives in the 2000 primaries, frequently clashes with party leaders, and opposes such religious conservative touchstones as the marriage amendment.

Secretary of Education Rod Paige is little known outside of his home state of Texas. Sen. Zell Miller of Georgia is strongly pro-life, but he is a Democrat.

“The most conservative speaker right now is John McCain, who is truly a fiscal conservative. But a lot of conservatives believe the conservative movement that got us here is being ignored at the convention,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham, South Carolina Republican.

More than half the Republicans in the House have signed a formal complaint to President Bush about the failure to give prominent conservative, pro-life party members a single prime-time speaking slot. The members are asking to add Henry Hyde to the speaking roster.

Depressing. Kate O’Beirne rightly assailed this rise of Rockefeller Republicanism at National Review Online:

“The decision to showcase rogue elephants as representatives of the modern Republican party is not the mark of a self-confident party establishment. If the lineup is intended to make an overwhelmingly conservative party attractive to swing voters, it does so by pretending to be something it’s not. The Republican party seems to habitually internalize the criticisms of its opponents. When the only Reagan Republican to enjoy a prominent supporting role at the party’s convention is a Democrat, the GOP has a serious identity problem.”

Exactly right. Republicans have some nerve making light of the Hillary Clinton/Dem convention gaffe when so many conservatives have been shunned and ignored in the GOP convention’s own lineup.

So, help me celebrate diversity and add your suggestions for conservative convention speakers: Rep. Henry Hyde is a good choice. Here are a few of my nominees:

Ward Connerly

Tom Tancredo
Tom McClintock
Gianna Jessen

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Categories: 2004 campaign